Professor Rhoda Wanyenze was stepping out her office at Uganda’s Makerere University in March when a news item on the television caught her attention: more people had died of the novel coronavirus in China and Italy, and authorities were saying the pandemic was quickly making its way to Africa.
Immediately, Wanyenze – Dean of the University’s School of Public Health as well as an epidemiologist – felt a jolt of anxiety. In 2014, when an outbreak of Ebola in Guinea had been mishandled, the viral haemorrhagic fever had spread across West Africa like wildfire, killing more than 11,000 people.
The epidemic had left the rest of the continent paralysed and scientists and public health experts stupefied. It had been a global disaster. But the new epidemic, originating in China, felt different: the rate at which it was spreading and killing its victims was much faster.
Wanyenze reached for her phone and posted a call on the school’s Facebook page, urging fast action against the new epidemic.
“We must all act very fast given the rapid spread,” she said. “With COVID-19, every hour and day matters and we can quickly lose the battle if we don’t act quickly!”
Nawangwe named African Educationist of the Year
By Charles Etukuri
Makerere University Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe is the African Educationist of the Year.
The award was given to Prof. Nawangwe by the African Leadership Magazine.
On Monday evening, an elated Nawangwe said he was humbled by the recognition.
“I am humbled by the recognition of my efforts by the African Leadership Magazine. This gives me more energy to serve my continent better,” Nawangwe said.
Last year’s winner of the award was Prof. Samuel Edoumiekumo, vice-chancellor, Niger Delta University in Nigeria.
The African Leadership Magazine persons of the year, which is in its 10th year, is an annual award reserved for distinguished Africans, who have blazed the trail in the year under review.
Several Makerere University staff led by the university secretary Yusuf Kiranda congratulated Nawangwe on his well-deserved recognition.
Professor Stefan Peterson Swartling who is a health specialist at the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and an honorary professor at Makerere School of Public Health said, Nawangwe was a “well-chosen awardee”
Don Wycliff Wodelo said, “Professor your hard work is actually evident and a good example for us to follow.”
100 WOMEN FIXING UGANDA: Dorothy Okello, Dean, School of Engineering, CEDAT
By CEO Reporter
Dorothy Okello is Dean, School of Engineering, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT), Makerere University since August 2019. She is also a Senior Lecturer, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering & Researcher with netLabs!UG that seeks to be a leader in collaborative research, development and solutions on innovative telecommunication and networking technologies, strengthening the innovation ecosystem in Uganda and across East Africa and Adjunct Member of Faculty, Institute of Technology Carlow, Ireland.
Since May 2013, Dorothy has been a Senior Lecturer at College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology at Makerere University where she is involved in teaching and research in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering specializing in Telecommunications. Courses taught include Introduction to Electrical Engineering, Telecommunication Systems, Wireless Propagation, and Wireless Technologies. Research interests include community wireless networks, cognitive radio, gender & ICT for Development, innovations for affordable and accessible ICTs (information and communication technologies).
She also serves as Adjunct Member of Faculty, Institute of Technology Carlow, Ireland and Director of Innovation, Resilient Africa Network (RAN) hosted by Makerere University.
Supported by USAID, RAN is a multi-disciplinary network of 18 Sub-Saharan African universities that seek to identify, develop and scale innovative solutions to strengthen resilience of African communities.
Dorothy is a Member, Uganda Institution of Professional Engineers (UIPE), and registered by Engineers Registration Board (ERB). Served as UIPE President 2016-2018. Member, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and have served on 2017 – 2019 IEEE Ad Hoc Committee on Africa (AHCA).
100 WOMEN FIXING UGANDA: Dr. Sabrina Bakeera Kitaka, CHS
By Alphred Rhyman Agaba
Dr. Sabrina Bakeera Kitaka is a Senior Lecturer of Paediatrics and Adolescent Health at the College of Health Sciences, Makerere University Kampala, Uganda.
Prior to that appointment, she was a Medical Officer Special Grade at the Mulago National Referral Hospital in Kampala, as well as a Sewankambo Research Scholar.
She has extensive experience in scholarship, education, and clinical practice. Her current research interests relate to health systems (specifically patient-centered outcomes) and infectious diseases (particularly among HIV infected adolescents).
Her clinical interests are infectious diseases and growth and development outcomes, particularly the challenges of children transitioning into adolescence and then adulthood. She serves on various Boards and Technical Working Groups based in the Ministry of Health and is a reviewer of several journals.
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